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Poster: Capt. Cook Date: Jul 9, 2008 10:01pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

I have always felt that the introduction of the "Mandatory" Drum solo, sometime in 1978 or so, really changed in a rather predictable and unfortunate way the ebb and flow of the second set. And I am a Drummer, saying this. There are times when it seems to these ears that the drummers really stopped listening to what the band was doing, the jams out of say He's Gone, or Eyes of the World, or Playing in the Band, and just started POUNDING THE HELL out of their drums, almost overwelming whatever melodies and themes were starting to emerge. It really would have been nice to see even ONE show, after say 1980 that did not have a freakin 20 minute tom-tom fest.

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Poster: He Live's Date: Jul 9, 2008 10:40pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

does not lend itself to the LOOSE LUCY.....

no sir, like you said, they decided on a drum solo and stood by their guns..... ultimately a disappointing decision..... but who are we to judge -- we're just the fans.....


this is the sad list of predictable dates, sans "drumz" according to deadbase:

1/18/79
12/6/80
10/16/81
12/12/81
11/03/91

that;s right, if it was a concert with bob, jerry and phil from 78 on, they were gonna NOT PLAY about 13-22 minutes of the second set.... whatever, occasionally, it was a welcome aside to the noddling.... i mean noodling.

previously, they just didwhatever they wanted.




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Poster: veblen Date: Jul 9, 2008 11:48pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

as johnny carson used to say: "I did not know that..."

only FIVE times sans drums solo in that many years...that is really suprising...almost one of those pieces of info I didn't want to know since I don't think it was the most positive thing...

and then look at the five shows:

1/18/79: no drum solo this show (out of the five the only "standard" show without a drum solo)
12/6/80: acoustic only
10/16/81: set 1: acoustic - Foreign Show - Amsterdam
12/12/81: set 1: acoustic with Joan Baez
11/03/91: Bill Graham Memorial Concert in GGP

I guess once you are given a "donut" break it is hard to give back the time...

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Poster: He Live's Date: Jul 10, 2008 12:03am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

hehe.... donuts!


funny veblen..... and, seemingly true!

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Poster: veblen Date: Jul 10, 2008 12:19am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

powdered donuts I am sure...

just wondering if bill graham ever mentioned it regarding his wake show..."you boys know all the songs I like so I am not worried about it sounding good, but I only have one request: no ###### drums"

ok, I am listening to a two drums show as my penance for that...

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Poster: mcgannahan Date: Jul 10, 2008 5:07am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

if mickey had not come back into the fold, i doubt billy would have wanted to do a long solo every night by himself. instead, we could of had 2 or three donna jean songs to fill the void....ouch! or bobby could have resurrected the yeller dog story. a phil solo would have been freakin awesome, though.

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Poster: craven714 Date: Jul 10, 2008 6:27am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

"And I am a Drummer, saying this"

From a fellow drummer this is disturbing to me.
Maybe there are different levels of commitment or passion to drumming. Or maybe it's a matter of appreciatation.

I ALWAYS, ALWAYS looked forward to the drum segment.
One mans meat is another mans poison. I found myself gravitating, literally mentally and physically drawn toward the stage during drumz. Which really worked out for me since everyone else (probably you too) was going the other way to the bathrooms or whatever. Hell, I didnt mind ending up in someones 15th row seat because they didn't stay for drums/space. It always made the encore better too. just my opinion. I have known to be an asshole...

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Poster: johnnyonthespot Date: Jul 10, 2008 8:52am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

You're right, sometimes drums killed a great groove by pulling the plug to phone in what was pre-determined had to happen. ie. killed spontaniety.

Of course on the other hand there were some shows where drums was THE only place in the show where anything spontaneous and weird did occur.

I have more of a problem with space. That became even more of a formula.

But ULTIMATELY if you think about it, the second half of the second set became more and more and more of a predictable throwaway no matter how you look at it. I mean I love a lot of the Jerry epic tune slot songs, I can understand to a degree what they were doing with the Bobby rave up grande finally tunes ( even if they did permantely ruin NFA ), but when they ruined the coming out of space slot with shit like Gimme Some Lovin or ANY Brent tune, then that was a real bummer.

But hey, I just realized how whiny and trivial my rantings sound because I'd give anything to get to experience the magic again.

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Poster: the_full_monte Date: Jul 10, 2008 10:16am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

Hadn't thought about it that way but you make a great point about the post-space segment. Hearing the opening notes of "I Will Take You Home" or "Mr. Fantasy" after sitting through 20 minutes of drums>space could be a real letdown. At that point you basically had a 25 minute chunk of the evening with not much happening, and with only 2-3 songs remaining it made it that much harder to bring the energy level back up.

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Poster: Out_To_Lunch Date: Jul 10, 2008 10:45am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

Mickey Hart called it the 'Drum and Beam' segment of the show.

What's a beam?

I've seen and heard him play something that looked like a structral beam. It made the most sanity shattering noises I've ever heard. Thinking about that damn thing brings on flashbacks and a cold sweat ..... Where can I get one?

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Poster: mcgannahan Date: Jul 10, 2008 9:38pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

no, he was playing a whale penis.

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Poster: Out_To_Lunch Date: Jul 11, 2008 8:49am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

... like the one under your mama's bed.

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Poster: mcgannahan Date: Jul 11, 2008 2:31pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

no, hers was a little bigger than the one mickey used.

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Poster: SomeDarkHollow Date: Jul 10, 2008 8:38am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

Don't worry, I've got your back. As another drummer, I loved drums...but only the first few minutes or so. Once Mickey went back to The Beast, it quickly transformed into an excuse for a smoke break. Now, there were some nights where I did find myself really in tune with what they were doing, but they were few and far between. I understand that Jerry especially needed the time to uh, take care of things, but that didn't mean I had to like it. It seems like Drums>Space evolved into a required portion of the show tailored to the overly-bugging, becoming more and more of a task that the band felt obligated to perform as the years went on.

Thant's just me.

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Poster: august_wst Date: Jul 10, 2008 7:50am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Drums equals...

you guys do realize that the inception of the mandatory drums during the second set correlates with Jerry's increasing addictions and the need to "feed that jones"... right?!

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Poster: the_full_monte Date: Jul 10, 2008 7:48am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: The "Mandatory" Drum Solo

I agree completely- once that started, the band basically locked themselves into a more rigid format, and the shows from the later half of their career become a hell of a lot more predictable than those from the first half.

I'm not saying the drum segment wasn't often very enjoyable in and of itself- it most definately was - but by playing it EVERY night they really beat it into the ground (no pun intended), and by the mid-80s I thought it had gotten pretty stale despite the introduction of some new gizmos.